Horses reined in for Tweed show

MURWILLUMBAH Agricultural Society's annual show has become the latest victim of the% national horse flu outbreak.

At a meeting on Thursday night, organisers were left with no choice but to cancel all horse events following a travel ban on pony clubs across the state.

"But the show will go on," says show president Jenny Glasby, with a program of alternative%entertainment planned.

It's the first time in the show's 107-year history that horses will not feature on the program.

Ms Glasby said the decision was particularly galling given several horse events were rained out during last year's show.

"Horses are a very big part of agricultural shows, so it's very disappointing," she said.

"We were planning for a%bumper show this year and now we're just trying to see what other entertainment we can come up with."

Ms Glasby said side events such as the dog show, camel races and cattle judging would be moved to the showground's main arena.

The decision is also a loss for the Murwillumbah Pony Club, which this year celebrates its 50-year anniversary, and had been due to lead the show's grand opening parade on horseback.

The show, held at Murwillumbah Showgrounds from November 2-3, is one of the town's biggest events, attracting crowds of up to 10,000 through the gates. Ms Glasby said organisers were now bracing for a downturn in numbers.

Last month's horse-flu outbreak sparked an unprecedented lockdown on racing and horse events across the country.

The ongoing fallout continues to impact on show societies across the region, with Casino forced to cancel its show for the first time in 119 years.



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